Choosing the right kitchen worktop

Don’t panic it’s not as difficult as it first seems just close your eyes spin around with your arm out and which ever you land on that’s your worktop.

Okay that’s a daft approach and you probably won’t like how that game ends.

So here’s some information and a breakdown on different types of kitchen worktops including their features, as well as pros and cons. Hopefully you will find this guide useful and feel free to share it with your friends.

The most well-known and recognised worktop surfaces used in kitchen design

  • Granite
  • Solid Wood
  • Quartz

Tell me about granite worktops

Granite is a natural stone and is one of the hardest minerals in the world, which makes it a great for use in the kitchen where sharp knives and heavy pans are concerned. It comes in various colours with different flakes. One of the most common colours is the black granite worktop – it’s a very classic look and can be used in traditional or modern kitchens. You’ll hear almost every home renovation show such as Flipping Vegas harping on about ‘Granite’ or should I say ‘Scott I want granite’ –‘its outta control!’ But why? What is so special about this rock?

Pro’s using granite worktops

  • It’s tough stuff
  • Looks very cool
  • High-end finish to any kitchen
  • Comes in various colours

Cons of using granite

  • Expense – granite isn’t cheap
  • Heavy – installing granite is hard work, as it requires some muscle to lift and put in place. The 20ml granite worktops you see on EBay aren’t so bad but the more expensive granite worktops that are 60ml thick are beasts to lift so it depending on the length of your kitchen you may need extra help installing (which means more money to pay for fitting)
  • Strong but brittle – Okay not brittle but the sheer mass and weight of granite especially if you’ve got yourself a 5m length it doesn’t take much of a fall or dropping it down to heavy for it to crack or break in half. I have actually experienced this first time on a recent install when the fitter I was working with lost his grip and dropped it on to the counter and a £4000 slab of granite broke in two – eeeek!

We rate granite 7/10 (Looks great but the costs and potential breakage factor just lose a few points)

Solid Wood Worktops – the good bad and the ugly

In my opinion these only look really good in a more traditional design kitchen, a big chunk of butchers block looks killer in the right kitchen but there are some things to consider.

Pros of wood kitchen worktops

  • Compliments a traditional country design
  • Cost effective compared to granite worktops
  • Durable – less likely to break
  • Ages well if looked after (see cons)

Cons of using wood worktops for your kitchen

  • Limited design applications
  • Warping
  • Requires regular treatment with a good oil to maintain
  • Will scratch easily, must use chopping boards
  • Will scorch from hot pans.

Our rating 6/10 – limited applications but can look great in the right kitchen.

Quartz – so pretty why wouldn’t you?

If you’ve never seen quartz worktops in person ma I suggest you do this, internet images do not do it justice believe me on this.

Quartz is a volcanic stone material and has more colour options that any other type of worktop you can get for your kitchen. For this reason alone I put this #1 on my list of killer kitchen worktops to have.

There are only positives

  • It’s very strong
  • It’s more durable than granite (just)
  • More colour options
  • Looks amazing when the light hits it just right
  • Less expensive than granite (just about)
  • Doesn’t stain or mark

I have attached some of my favourite Quartz designs I found from some searching on Pinterest and Google.

Quartz designs 1

Quartz designs 2

Our rating 9/10 – it’s just an all round winner and whilst everyone is installing granite worktops you’ll have something far more unique and inspiring in your kitchen.

Thanks to Edinburgh Kitchen Company for letting me use their Quartz worktop images – they have 3 kitchen showrooms in Edinburgh, Livingston and Dalgety Bay.